Jay Norvell greets fans at Colorado State Spring Football Practices


The doors to the Colorado State football program are wide open.


The entrance to the facility was wide open when a frigid practice began at 7 a.m. Tuesday and a number of fans slipped in to watch the first official day on the pitch of the Jay Norvell era.

Norvell is keen to make them the community team, with the public being invited to all 15 spring practices.

“I think it’s great when students want to come out and watch,” Norvell said after several members of the Outlaws of CSU student group showed up for practice.

“I think it’s great for the community to want to watch, the parents and (the media). I love the open training format. We just want to keep building this football program and getting people interested.”

Norvell’s Power Offense involves a lot of throws, but they’re simple concepts. Installation takes just three days and the coach believes hosting Rams fans is far more important than hiding the Xs and O’s. It’s a rarity in college football where access to programs is dwindling. every year across the country.

“We don’t really have a lot of secrets,” Norvell said. “We try to work hard and we try to be good at what we do.”

Spring training always brings the energy and excitement of a new season and new potential, but that’s overkill with a new coaching staff after a season that has left many disconnected and frustrated.

There aren’t a ton of huge takeaways on the field from spring training in shorts. Quarterback Clay Millen throws a clean ball. Nevada transfer Tory Horton looks like a top receiver. There are a lot of passes thrown in training now.

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But the pillars of the program and the “soccer phrases” become clear. These are the somewhat clichéd slogans that teams use as motivational and empowerment tactics.

There is a sign at the entrance to the pitch with “Today we play the Ram way” on the front and every player and coach taps it before practice begins.

Norvell even wore a collared shirt (similar to the auto shop shirt) with “CSU football” on one breastplate and the “Jay” tag on the other. Meaning? It’s time to work. In CSU football, “we have to pay rent every day,” Norvell said.

All football teams have slogans to live by and it takes time to see the proof of success. Accountability is enforced.

Norvell pulled the team from the locker room inside Canvas Stadium earlier this year because the players weren’t taking care of it and creating a mess. They had to use auxiliary dressing rooms in the stadium.

Now they are back after gaining access again.

The team will train three times a week ahead of the spring game on April 23. The first day was full of energy, an expected but necessary start.

“There’s a lot of juice,” safety Jack Howell said. “I love the positive energy and the juice that everyone gives off. It’s a great environment. »

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The CSU offensive line practices with the defensive line during spring football practice at the Colorado State University football practice field in Fort Collins, Colorado on Tuesday, March 22, 2022.

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